SEOUL, Feb. 10 (Xinhua) -- South Korea's Defense Ministry said Monday that it will conduct annual joint military drills with the United States from Feb. 24 to April 18 despite the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK)'s protest against it.
Defense Ministry Spokesman Kim Min-seok told a routine press briefing that South Korea-U.S. combined forces command will carry out the computer-simulated "Key Resolve" command post exercise from Feb. 24 to March 6.
Kim said that it is an annually-held command post exercise between the two allies of defensive nature to verify defense capabilities of the South Korea-U.S. combined forces, adding that around 5,200 U.S. troops will participate in this year's exercise. It was larger than 3,500 U.S. military servicemen's participation last year.
The "Foal Eagle" field training exercise will be staged from Feb. 24 to April 18, Kim said, noting that about 7,500 U.S. forces will join the annual exercise of field maneuvers, lower than some 10,000 troops last year.
Kim said that the DPRK was notified of the schedules Sunday morning through the United Nations Command, which oversees the Armistice Agreement that ended the 1950-53 Korean War. He added that the ministry will inform neighboring countries of the schedules within Monday.
S. Korea stresses irrelevance of family reunion to military drill with U.S.
SEOUL, Feb. 10 (Xinhua) -- South Korea on Monday stressed irrelevance of the agreed family reunion to the joint military exercises with the United States following the announcement of detail schedules for the annual drills.
Unification Ministry spokesman Kim Eui-do told a routine press briefing that the "Key Resolve" is an annually-held joint military exercise of defensive nature as explained several times before, saying that it has nothing to do with the family reunion event. Full story
No immediate signs of DPRK's nuclear test: S. Korean defense minister
SEOUL, Feb. 10 (Xinhua) -- No immediate signs were detected yet that the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) would stage its fourth nuclear test, South Korean Defense Minister Kim Kwan- jin said Monday.
Kim made the remarks to lawmakers during the interpellation session at the parliamentary headquarters. However, the top military official said preparations for another nuclear test were completed in the DPRK's northeastern region of Punggye-ri, where the third nuclear test was conducted in February last year. Full story